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Playing Patterns in Diagonal Scales

Question by Alexander

Hello, Marc_Andre!

I’ve been studying diagonal scales for a couple of days and like the idea.


I actually can play up and down freely, but have some hesitation when playing patterns ( like thirds or 1-2-3-1-2-3-4 etc).

There are places (mostly when encountering 1st finger shifts) where I have to break the system.

What is your opinion ? Do you break the scheme ?

Thank you,


Hello Alexander,

Yes, I sometimes have to break the “system” of diagonal playing for musicality. See, the diagonal concepts works well for long, linear lines that are mostly scalar in nature.

When working at intervals or arpeggios, it is important (and often necessary) to modify the concepts to make “real music”, if you’ll excuse the expression!

Once again, see what works (and sounds) best for you and stick to it.

I hope this helps,


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